INTRODUCTION TO THEATRE AND PERFORMANCE STUDIES 2 - 2018/9

Module code: THE1026

Module Overview

This module extends and develops work completed on THE1025 Introduction to Theatre and Performance Studies 1 by introducing a range of theatre and performance practices and the ideas informing them from the mid-twentieth century through to the present day. It picks up from the tail-end of modernism, and will indicatively work through such areas as postmodernism, postdramatic theatre, performance art, live art, feminist theatre, the LGBTQ movement, verbatim theatre, immersive theatre and current trends in theatre and performance. Hence, the module extends an introduction to the core knowledge underpinning the Theatre and Performance programme and, like its precursor, dwells on influential and radical theatre and performance practices and practitioners that have shaped theatre history in national and international contexts, as well as companies and practitioners who might otherwise be excluded from, or work to challenge, the establishment of a “canon” of work.

Module provider

Guildford School of Acting

Module Leader

CULL LK Dr (GSA)

Number of Credits: 15

ECTS Credits: 7.5

Framework: FHEQ Level 4

JACs code: W440

Module cap (Maximum number of students): N/A

Module Availability

Semester 2

Prerequisites / Co-requisites

THE1025 Introduction to Theatre and Performance Studies

Module content

Picking up where THE1025 Introduction to Theatre and Performance Studies 1 left off, this module continues with a genealogical investigation of theatre and performance as evolving practices influenced by particular social, historical and political contexts. It exposes students to diverse performance texts, documentation and scholarship, and approaches theatre and performance as innovative sites of experimentation, radicalism and protest. A strong emphasis is placed on critical analysis, reflection and debate, encouraging students to find their own critically-informed voice when thinking, writing and talking about theatre and performance today. To these ends, this module introduces politically- and ethically-significant topics ranging from misogyny and racism, to studies of class, trauma, and political crises.

Indicative subjects of study and case studies include: Carolee Schneemann; Annie Sprinkle; Marina Abramović; Ron Athey; William Pope.L; Welfare State International; Bread and Puppet Theatre; the Black Arts Movement; the Wooster Group; Split Britches; Complicité; Goat Island; Robert Lepage; Ivo van Hove; Verbatim Theatre; Theatre of the Oppressed; the shift from theatre studies to performance studies; protest and/as performance; Punchdrunk; Kwame Kwei-Armah; and Pussy Riot.

Assessment pattern

Assessment type Unit of assessment Weighting
Coursework Essay (1500 words) 100
Coursework 300-word thesis statement Pass/Fail

Alternative Assessment

Essay (1500 words)

Assessment Strategy

The assessment strategy is designed to provide students with the opportunity to work toward the following learning outcomes:

• Identify theoretical and methodological developments in theatre as a form that relates to changing artistic, historical and political contexts
• Apply theoretically-informed approaches to the analysis of theatre in culture, with awareness of key historical, political and/or aesthetic perspectives
• Conduct research with a range of tools and across a range of resources to produce informed and clearly-communicated academic argument

Thus, the summative assignment for this module consists of an academic essay to enable students to demonstrate all of the above. However, where the essay for THE1025 Introduction to Theatre and Performance Studies 1 required students to select a theoretical or methodological paradigm and to utilize this paradigm in the analysis of a performance or text, this essay asks students to go further by placing greater emphasis on the provision of their own, critically-informed scholarly argument.

To aid students in developing a robust argument, feedback on a 300-word thesis statement – the module’s formative assignment – will be offered mid-way through the module.

Hence, this assessment strategy is designed to encourage both critical analysis and independent, creative thinking within scholarly enquiry, ensuring that students are supported along the way in developing their ideas.

Module aims

  • To provide core knowledge of theatre and performance practices and studies as a foundation to the Theatre and Performance programme
  • To consider theatre and performance in historical context, both in terms of the form of theatre itself and in terms of the operation and interpretation of theatre in wider culture(s)
  • To introduce students to the aesthetic and political significances of theatre
  • To enable students to use informed and relevant critical vocabularies and research methods

Learning outcomes

Attributes Developed
001 Identify theoretical and methodological developments in theatre as a form that relates to changing artistic, historical and political contexts CK
002 Apply theoretically-informed approaches to the analysis of theatre in culture, with awareness of key historical, political and/or aesthetic perspectives CKT
003 Conduct research with a range of tools and across a range of resources to produce informed and clearly-communicated academic argument PT

Attributes Developed

C - Cognitive/analytical

K - Subject knowledge

T - Transferable skills

P - Professional/Practical skills

Overall student workload

Independent Study Hours: 128

Seminar Hours: 22

Methods of Teaching / Learning

The learning and teaching strategy is designed to: enhance knowledge of twentieth- and twenty-first-century theatre practice and theory; foster critical thinking and analytical skills (particularly with regards to theatre and performance analysis), as well as evaluative skills; enhance confidence and ability to articulate ideas clearly and effectively; nurture effective argumentative skills; enhance knowledge of twentieth- and twenty-first-century theatre practice and theory; promote supportive spaces for deliberation, contestation and debate.

Indicative learning and teaching methods include: lecture/seminars, workshops, field trips, peer-to-peer learning and independent research and reflection.

Indicated Lecture Hours (which may also include seminars, tutorials, workshops and other contact time) are approximate and may include in-class tests where one or more of these are an assessment on the module. In-class tests are scheduled/organised separately to taught content and will be published on to student personal timetables, where they apply to taken modules, as soon as they are finalised by central administration. This will usually be after the initial publication of the teaching timetable for the relevant semester.

Reading list

Reading list for INTRODUCTION TO THEATRE AND PERFORMANCE STUDIES 2 : http://aspire.surrey.ac.uk/modules/the1026

Programmes this module appears in

Programme Semester Classification Qualifying conditions
Theatre and Performance BA (Hons) 2 Compulsory A weighted aggregate mark of 40% is required to pass the module
Theatre and Performance with Creative Writing BA (Hons) 2 Optional A weighted aggregate mark of 40% is required to pass the module

Please note that the information detailed within this record is accurate at the time of publishing and may be subject to change. This record contains information for the most up to date version of the programme / module for the 2018/9 academic year.